Restoration work continues at St Mary’s Cathedral

Restoration work is set to continue at St Mary’s Cathedral in Hobart, forcing a temporary closure of the historically-significant building at what is traditionally one of the quietest times of the year.

The Cathedral will be closed from Monday 4 July until Friday 30 September, 2022. Regular daily Mass and devotions will take place in the Cathedral Crypt which will be fitted out for this purpose. All weekend Masses will be transferred to the chapel on the Guilford Young College campus in Barrack Street, and funerals and Baptisms will be conducted from the Parish’s Sacred Heart Church in New Town.

Stage one of the restoration works has already seen the exhumation and reinternment of four early bishops, along with Tasmania’s first priest Fr Philip Connolly, in the cathedral crypt. The next task involves:

  • A complete refurbishment of the timber floors throughout the Cathedral;
  • The repair and resurfacing of damaged interior walls and painting of the Cathedral’s interior;
  • Replacement of the outdated heating system with a discrete and energy efficient reverse cycle heating/cooling solution, and;
  • Full replacement of the outdated incandescent lighting with an energy efficient and reliable LED lighting solution.

Archbishop Julian said planning for the next stage of works had been done in such as way as to minimise inconvenience.

“The nature of this next stage of works is such that the cost and the period of overall disruption can be significantly lessened if the works occur concurrently during a brief period of closure.

“My focus is the comfort of the faithful and visitors alike, who come to the Cathedral to worship and marvel at the liturgical and devotional heritage of this beautiful cathedral,” His Grace said.

The current St Mary’s Cathedral building was designed by Tasmanian gothic revival architect Henry Hunter, who took over the project after the first cathedral building had to be largely dismantled and rebuilt following poor construction. The last major work on the interior of St Mary’s Cathedral was undertaken around 60 years ago.

“It is the cathedral for the whole of Tasmania. It’s not just the Cathedral Parish, but it is the mother church of the Archdiocese of Hobart, and therefore it is important for all Catholics. And it is part, too of our heritage for Tasmania.”

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